McDonald’s Smoothie Chicken-Out – The popular fast-food franchiser that sells billions and billions of burgers made a sudden and silly decision in cancelling this week’s free fruit smoothie promotion. Reason given – McDonald Corp. (NYSE: MCD, stock) was worried that it would run out of the fruit drinks (how silly could that be).
The fast-food chain’s Chief Merketing Officer claimed the fruit-flavored yogurt drinks “an absolute hit” with “unprecedented demand”. McDonald has originally planned to offer free samples from July 22 to July 24 nationwide in the United States.
The frozen drinks (which include real fruit blends, fruit juice, ice and low-fat yogurt) are available in strawberry-banana and wild berry flavours. The smoothies can also be customized with or without low-fat yogurt. They are available in small (12 ounces), medium (16 ounces) and large (22 ounces), and the suggested retail price of a small smoothie is $2.29.
Dumb-O-Meter Score: 80 – The Chief Marketing Officer should be sacked for such a poor planning and silly reason for withdrawing the give-away. Why should the fears that supplies will run out be an excuse to stop it? If the supplies ran out then so be it. It will only show the smoothie product is great, no? Fire the dumb chief marketing officer.
[ 2 ] European Banks Stress Test – The stocks were volatile and the Euro falls because everyone was worried about the stress test. Suddenly the stress test became the only factor that will determine if we’ll live another day to see the sunshine. And the result is out – only 7 of 91 European banks failed stress tests. Just like what the CNBC joked about the test: some banks have to fail in order for people to believe the test.
Some of the facts about the failed banks:
- 5 Spanish banks have failed the test namely Espiga, Diada, Unnim, Civica ad Cajasur
- 1 German bank has failed the test – Hypo Real Estate
- Only 1 Greek bank has failed the test – ATE Bank
- All French banks have passed the test – wish their soccer team is as successful as this test in their FIFA World Cup *grin*
- Swedish National Bank say all their banks have passed the test
- All 5 major Italian banks have passed the stress test
- Interestingly all the failed banks need only about €3.5 billion in additional total capital
So, suddenly the problematic Greece is not a problem after all. Were the European authorities serious about the stress test or were they instructed to ensure that most of the banks passed? It makes sense for the authorities to be lenient about the stress test lest they wish to see another global financial crisis after the U.S.’s subprime crisis.
Dumb-O-Meter Score: 85 – Most analysts think the stress tests were a joke and simply a standard procedure to pacify the analysts that everything is still rosy. It’s rather hard to believe these banks which are exposed to real estate and sovereign debts have actually survived the test.
[ 3 ] White iPhone 4’s is Delayed – Apple Inc. (Nasdaq: AAPL, stock) said it was pushing back the release of a white version of its popular iPhone 4 because of manufacturing problems. Its’ statement – “White models of Apple’s new iPhone 4 have continued to be more challenging to manufacture than we originally expected, and as a result they will not be available until later this year. The availability of the more popular iPhone 4 black models is not affected.”
Just how much more difficult it is to make white iPhone than black iPhone? The electronic parts are identical on both white and black iPhone so the only thing left is the paint job, no? A Chinese newspaper reportedly said that workers at a glass supplier are struggling with finding the right combination of materials to accommodate manufacturing process while at the same time getting the color just right. It is likely that the delay is related to yellowish tint developing during the phone’s manufacture.Or maybe Steve Jobs’s team is still cracking their head whether to embed the duct-tape to the antenna so as to solve the Antenna-Gate problem and hence save the extra cost of giving away free bumpers to new white iPhone 4 customers.
Dumb-O-Meter Score: 90 – While the white iPhone 4 may not command as many fans as for the black version, the way Apple release their reason for the delay is simply hilarious. Just how much more difficult it is in making white casing than black casing?
[ 4 ] Facebook Mark Zuckerberg Signed Away 84% Ownership – Facebook may have claimed its 500 million active users but Paul Ceglia, the owner of a wood-pellet fuel company in rural Wellsville, N.Y., filed a complaint last month alleging that he signed a contract with Facebook founder and CEO Mark Zuckerberg in 2003 that entitles him to an 84 percent stake in the company. In response Facebook said the ownership lawsuit is “absurd”.
However, Facebook admitted that Zuckerberg did do coding for Paul Ceglia but says it suspect the contract is forgery. The contract states Paul Ceglia was suppose to acquire a 50% stake or interest in Face
book (then known as The Face Book) in an agreement to develop the website and Ceglia was supposed to pay Zuckerberg US$1,000.
Here’s the fun part – Ceglia claimed the contract also entitled him an additional 1% stake for each day (after 1st Jan 2004) until the website (thefacebook.com) was completed. According to the lawsuit, the website was finished on 4th Feb 2004 – 34 days late – thus giving Ceglia additional 34% stake in the business.
Facebook now need to prove that the claimed contract in forgery or to at least get the lawsuit thrown out on technicality (how Zuckerberg wish the lawsuit happens in Malaysia where he can easily bribe the judiciary to throw out the case, as happen frequently). Otherwise we’ll see one very happy and “Rich” Paul Ceglia walking away.
Dumb-O-Meter Score: 95 – US$1,000 may be a lot of money to a student but to sign such contract (provided it’s genuine in the first place) could be the dumbest thing to do. Zuckerberg may become “Suckerberg” after all.
[ 5 ] Manchester United’s Devil Jersey – Malaysian clerics proclaimed Muslims must not wear the popular Manchester United red jersey simply because of the “Devil” emblem on the team crest. The conservative religious scholar, most of them are aligned to ruling government, said the jersey is un-Islamic. However Manchester United is freaking popular amongst Muslim-majority Malaysia so many were taken aback and thought the idea was rather silly.
Such proclaimation also means teams from Brazil, Norway, Portugal, Denmark, England, Switzerland, Serbia and Barcelona would be banned because their shirts carry images of the cross (Christian crucifix). Nooh Gadot, an adviser to the Johor religious council said it was freaking dangerous for a Muslim to worship the symbols of other religious or the devils. He further added that wearing such jerseys will erode the Muslim’s belief in Islam.
Harussani Zakaria, another cleric from Perak urged Muslims who wear such jerseys to “repent immediately”. He said many soccer fans were unaware of the image on the emblem. However Harussani said a fatwa on the matter is not necessary as it is clearly wrong for Muslims to wear shirts with devils and other unIslamic symbols because it is against the teachings of Islam.
Social networking sites like Twitter and Facebook were flooded with comments from Malaysian fans making jokes of such a silly declaration with one joked that the reason why the clerics are so extreme was because they (the clerics) are supporters of Liverpool.
Dumb-O-Meter Score: 100 – If these so-called muftis are so adamant that wearing such jerseys could so easily swing the Muslims to other religion, why so stupid and dumb as not to issue a fatwa to immediately stop such a Satanic influence? Sometimes you just got to be amaze on the dumbness of these cleric, mostly are aligned to UMNO. The more they talk the more the world realizes how such extreme people actually exist (in Malaysia under the government led by UMNO). Maybe Nooh Gadot and Harussani Zakaria will be happy if the fans replace the Manchester United’s Devil emblem with photo of PM Najib Razak (*muahahaha*)
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